All-ages concerts are not impossible to find in Denver, thanks to promoters’ efforts to include as much potential audience in their programming — and ticket sales — as possible.
But they’re not the rule. Furthermore, their name belies the fact that teenagers tend to benefit most from all-ages shows, given that they’re old enough to be mobile and independent, but not old enough to get into concerts where 21-and-up with alcohol sales (which tend to dominate at mid-sized and smaller clubs) halt them at the door.
That’s one of the things Museum of Contemporary Art Denver’s Fem Fest hopes to address. The second annual, all-ages event on May 12 unites women artists, musicians and performers from across the city in a celebration of empowerment, creative self-reliance and diverse, all-ages culture.
Think of it as a less academic, more entertainment-focused complement to MCA’s popular “Feminism & Co.” lecture series, producer Bree Davies said.
“The all-are-welcome aspect is really important to me, and that really means from babies to grandmas,” said Davies, a longtime Denver writer, activist and musician. “But my focus for sure is teenagers, because it’s just such a pivotal age when you’re figuring out who you want to be and what you want to do.”
Davies partnered with local organizations such as Girls Rock Denver, where she has volunteered for about a decade, and the nonprofit Youth on Record to employ stage managers, DJs and other folks at the fest who aren’t yet old enough to get their learner’s permits.
“It makes me so excited to see young people getting an opportunity to not just perform, but to go through this process of learning how to book a show, send an invoice and get paid for their work,” said Davies, who also co-founded Denver’s women-focused Titwrench Festival.
“And that’s something I’m very transparent about,” she continued. “There’s a lot you’re expected to know about the industry as an artist or performer, and people don’t consider you a professional if you don’t. Which is not true.”
Fem Fest will take place in and outside of the museum, with programming that reflects the diverse backgrounds and disciplines of its participants — with an eye toward turning them into future performers.
Admission is $20-$25 for adults, and adult beverages will be on hand, including free beer and tequila for the first 300 people from Ratio Beerworks and Proximus Tequila, respectively. But it’s only $5 for 18 and under, and there will …
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